“How can we get people excited about the content we publish on our blog?”
It’s a question every marketing manager and entrepreneur has asked themselves at least once. Why? Because marketing ultimately is about making an impression – the more people you can reach, the better. So how can you grow your readership? We could lie and say that it’s easy, but the truth is that growing your audience will take hard work and commitment. However, finding an audience doesn’t have to be burdensome either. By following tried-and-true strategies, you may just find that you can create the buzz you need without having to break the bank (or your back).
Discuss Diverse Subjects (with Expertise)
If you have been researching ways to bring people to your blog, you have likely read this tip more than once: don’t just publish self-promotional content! Your audience is diverse, so the subject matters you cover should be diverse too. Create posts that help people in your industry, create posts that are tailored to your clientele, create posts that are informative, and create posts that are funny and entertaining… put simply, cover a gamut of topics.
If your blog follows the same formula for every one of its posts, recurring readers will quickly turn away, and new readers will quickly find that your blog offers nothing of value. Consider your industry and then consider what your peers and clients may be interested in. Do you have an idea of what those topics may be? If so, write about them! And don’t be afraid to flex your intellectual muscles a bit. A long, informative post is more likely to be shared and more likely to provide value as well. Be the expert in your industry.
Write For People (Not Robots)
The urge to write for the search engines will be great (after all, search engines can help your blog articles be found organically for relevant search queries) but you may want to consider ignoring that devil on your shoulder, and focusing on the angel perched on your other shoulder instead. Ultimately, you want people reading your blog, not robots. An article that ranks first for an obscure search query or two, but which is also all but unreadable, provides your company no benefit. On the other hand, an article that doesn’t rank at all, yet is engaging and finds an audience on social media, can.
Write engaging content that truly helps, educates, and informs users. Take Whole Foods or Amway, for example. These corporate blogs are written with their readers’ interests in mind. The Amway blog (Amway Connections) discusses topics like skin care, hair care, makeup, and healthy living, while Whole Foods (Whole Story) discusses healthy eating, routinely publishes posts with inviting recipes, and announces community events. Who are you writing your blog articles for: people or search engines?
Make it Shareable
As a general rule of thumb, make the content easy for readers to share and interact with. If you want to encourage engagement from readers, you should go to where your readers are. Post your articles on Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr, link to them from complementary Instagram posts, make announcements on LinkedIn, and direct readers to recent content through email newsletters. And don’t forget to include social links on the blog article itself, so that readers can quickly and easily post it to their social channels. A recommendation from a friend will have far more influence than anything your company can accomplish through traditional marketing initiatives, so make it easy for your readers to recommend and share your posts.
Use Video Content
As YouTube has demonstrated quite plainly, online video is now as much a part of the Internet as text and images. If your company isn’t leveraging this medium for your marketing initiatives (which your blog most certainly is a part of), you are missing out. Using textual content alone is a wasted opportunity, and that is because video allows you to tell a story in ways that text and imagery alone do not.
With video, you can summarize complex topics in a short amount of time. You can also illustrate complex topics (say, how an internal combustion engine works) that would incredibly difficult to convey through plain text. And you can entertain and engage people in a way that no other medium can match. There is a reason television made radio all but obsolete overnight. Do you have a complex topic that you’d like to share with your readers? Or perhaps you have a boring topic that nonetheless bears discussing. Video is your friend!
Have a Variety of Voices
Finally, have other people besides yourself contribute to your company blog. Look at the popular news blog, Huffington Post, or the pop culture blog, Vulture. Both have multiple writers contributing to the blog on a continuous basis. This creates a diversity in voice, tone, and subject matter. You may even consider engaging your best clients and having them write a guest post. This provides an outside perspective that may be appreciated by your readership. Ultimately, you want your blog’s draw to be self-evident to readers. Make the best blog that you can and you’ll accomplish just this; follow trends and get mired in the digital rabbit hole, and you may find you’re chasing your own tail.